We had the good fortune of connecting with Brae Wyckoff and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Brae, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
Everyone one of us has a choice in life. Some of us have chosen the wrong assignment they were called to. I chose writing. It took me a while to get there, meaning, I did the corporate career job until finally submitting to the call in my life to be a full-time writer. I left the large sum of money in the career to be the professional author I dreamed about. I have written and published seven books now. I have won awards. I have sold thousands of copies. I have spoken to the masses on stage. All of that type of success is dribble compared to the messages I have received from my work. “I literally just started reading this and I am inspired to tears!” “This is a book that will truly grasp you straight from the beginning and leave you in wonder as you ponder yourself and your place in the world.” “Christian Fantasy Stuff is rare! But good Christian Fantasy Stuff is even more rare!” “This story is possibly one of the best of fantasy I have read in recent years.” I thrive on the comments more than the sales. Storytelling enriches us all and I want to be the best storyteller I can possibly be. Storytelling captures us. It brings us to deeper truths. It speaks to our hearts. This is why I have pursued this creative calling. To touch lives and let God transform hearts.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Writing never gets easier, but it DOES get better! I thought I was only going to be writing epic fantasy books for my entire life. I published my first book, The Orb of Truth, in 2012, won some awards, was building my author resume, got established as a credible author within the community of other notable authors, and so on. I published book 2, The Dragon God, and book 3, The Vampire King, by 2015, and was well on my way. After the release of the third book, however, something began to shift within me. I felt God was calling me out of the boat. To walk on water, not calm, peaceful water, but roaring waves kind. I was uncertain of things. In the boat, I was comfortable, felt safe, was in my own little world of writing stories. Specifically, epic fantasy. But God… He had other plans that He was beginning to reveal to me. I was asked to teach a writing workshop at a conference in September of 2015. At this conference, I had a room packed with people. One of the questions I asked was, “How many of you are currently writing a book?” No one raised their hand. That was odd. They came to the Writers Workshop. I then asked, “Are any of you writing at all?” I asked it more in jest but quickly realized that their faces told me they were not writing. It was at this point that I heard God inside of my mind to ask them, “How many of you have received a feeling or calling from God or someone told you that you should write a book?” ALL the hands shot up. This is when God began to inform me that many of his Kingdom Writers were lost and needed guidance. All this time God had been training me to be that Pastor for the writers. At the end of 2015, God instructed me to, “Gather my scribes and give me room to speak to them.” In 2016, we began to gather. Five the first month, then ten, then twenty, and so on. We now have over 170 KWA members and it continues to grow. I travel around the world equipping, empowering, and encouraging other Kingdom Writers. God expanded my writing in multiple genres to continue to understand and help others navigate their calling. Children’s books, historical fiction, a writer’s devotional (Kingdom Writers Devotional), and now my next endeavor is a horror/thriller where I will be leaving the 99 and going after the 1. I have conducted workshops to train other writers. I have poured all of my knowledge into those who God brings along my path. But through it all, the biggest thing God has taught me is it isn’t about the training but more about the community, about the relationships. That is where it matters most. That is the message of Kingdom Writers. Yes, we want to reach more people for Christ through our writing but God is showing us how to do that through community and not as an individual. It is so incredible to watch. So wonderful to be a part of it. God is amazing.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
We have incredible beaches here in San Diego. We would take a stroll in downtown Carlsbad, get some ice cream at Handel’s, then walk the beach. Probably catch the sunset. The next day, we would go to Oceanside to walk the famous wooden pier, have lunch at Ruby’s at the end of the pier, watch the surfers, fishermen, and catch another sunset. Now, time with me wouldn’t be complete without Starbucks, In N Out burgers, and Mexican food. This would happen throughout the week. One of my favorite things to do is catch up with one another. Share our dreams, our goals, encourage one another, and find out where they are in those endeavors. Another place to go is La Jolla Coves to see the sea lions and beautiful coastline. Of course, we also have the famous Zoo, Seaworld, and the Gaslamp District in downtown San Diego. There is so much to choose from.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I want to recognize my amazing wife, Jill Wyckoff, for her unending love and support for my creativity. She is a professional artist herself and has trained others all around the world. Both of us encourage one another to go after the creative lifestyle God has called us into. Secondly, I want to acknowledge our incredible community of Kingdom Writers. They have jumped in with us over the years and we have seen amazing breakthroughs in many of them. Some had never written anything and now are working on publishing their fourth book. It is a powerful community that encourages and supports one another like none I have ever seen. Thank you all for loving Jill and me so well. Blessings upon Kingdom Writers Association.
Other: www.BraeWyckoff.com www.KingdomCreativityInternational.com